Cyprus hit by magnitude 5.5 earthquake

Quake was felt in the western Paphos region and in the capital Nicosia

Cyprus lies in an earthquake zone but rarely experiences large tremors.
Cyprus lies in an earthquake zone but rarely experiences large tremors.

Cyprus was hit by a magnitude 5.5 earthquake on Wednesday, according to the US Geological Survey.

The quake hit 71 km (44 miles) northwest of Limassol in Cyprus and was mainly felt in the western Paphos region and in the capital Nicosia. There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

Cyprus state radio reported the tremor was a magnitude 5.3, at a shallow depth of 3 km west of Kissonerga, a village in Paphos popular with British expats.

"The chair I was sitting on started moving and my sister came running down the stairs to tell me the wardrobes and doors were rattling," Sarah Ktisti, a journalist living in the region told Reuters.

One Cyprus resident said the tremor seemed strong, while another described his chair moving for a few seconds.

A member of the British RAF force in Akrotiri, on the south coast of the island, told Sky News the quake was not felt there.

The highest recorded in recent years was a 6.3 earthquake in 1996 which caused some structural damage. No-one was injured.

Additional reporting by Reuters

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